The 24-Hour News Cycle moves from Impeachment to COVID-19 to the Primaries – What’s next?
In recent weeks, we’ve seen several major stories in the news. On the political front, in addition to the arrival of the presidential election through the 2020 caucuses and primaries, we have just experienced the third presidential impeachment in American history. In international news, the latest (not the first) coronavirus outbreak has hit China, now referred to as COVID-19, leading to closed borders and heightened screening at hospitals worldwide.1
It’s not so much the facts of what’s going on that are unusual – none of these matters are unprecedented – but the way that they are reported in the media can be alarming. Even frightening.
How might this affect me? When major events make headlines, it’s easy to put yourself in the picture. Knowing, as well, how such events might affect the financial markets, it’s also easy to wonder how your investments and retirement strategy might fare.
The truth? Political ups and downs, virus outbreaks, and other circumstances might lead to some short-term volatility on Wall Street. But it’s important to remember two things: 1) Your portfolio is positioned to reflect your risk tolerance, time horizon, and goals. 2) The way we experience news has changed over the years, and not all of it for the better.
Never-ending news. On June 1, 1980, businessman and broadcaster Ted Turner debuted Cable News Network (CNN), the world’s first 24-hour television news channel. In the four decades since, other similar channels have emerged. Collectively, they changed how the world experiences news. Notably, it was the dawn of the 24-hour news cycle.2
Before 1980, news was very different. Major newspapers might have published several editions during a day, but most areas only had a morning or evening edition. Radio might offer news break updates at the top of the hour, with news programs in the morning, afternoon, and evening. Television followed a similar pattern.
The never-ending news cycle means that news organizations have an interest in continuing to report on the same news story even though little or nothing has changed. Twenty-four hours is a lot of time to fill, and they need ratings in order to be of value to advertisers. While this doesn’t necessarily mean that the news has become inaccurate or sensationalistic (Even though in many cases it is), it might be perceived as repetitive.
It’s also becoming ubiquitous. With our smartphones, we’re often receiving news updates immediately throughout the day.
Keep informed, but don’t be rattled. Your investment and retirement strategy, has been designed and put into place with consideration of big news events, both major and minor. A good strategy gives you room for market changes that might see reactions that last a few days – even a few years. Staying the course is often the smartest move, partially because you aren’t reacting immediately to a dip, but rather taking advantage of dips. Focus on the next 5-10 years…and not the next 5-10 days.
So, keep yourself informed, but if you get too worried, have a conversation with your investment advisor. They can help you understand what the news means for your financial life and offer you the context you need to remain confident in your strategy.
If you ever have any questions about your investments or retirement plans, please feel free to give me a call at 801-545-0696.
Stonecreek Wealth Advisors, Inc.
11650 S. State Street, Suite 360
Draper, UT 84020
1 – sciencemag.org/news/2020/02/bit-chaotic-christening-new-coronavirus-and-its-disease-name-create-confusion [2/12/20]
2 – history.com/this-day-in-history/cnn-launches 
This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. Market indices discussed are unmanaged. Investors cannot invest in unmanaged indices. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This material was prepared by MarketingLibrary, Inc., for Mark Lund, Mark is known as a Wealth Advisor, The 401k Advisor, Investor Coach, Financial Advisor, Financial Planner, Investment Advisor and author of The Effective Investor. Mark offers investment advisory services through Stonecreek Wealth Advisors, Inc. a fiduciary, independent, fee-only, Registered Investment Advisor firm providing investment and retirement planning for individuals and 401k consulting for small businesses. Mark’s newsletter is called The Fiduciary Report. Cities served in Utah are: Salt Lake County, Park City, Salt Lake City, Murray, West Jordan, Sandy, Draper, South Jordan, Provo, Orem, Lehi, Highland, Alpine, American Fork, and Utah County.